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A brief introduction to our plum, damson, bullace and cherry varieties

Plums and particularly damsons and bullaces were also to be found in hedges and woods. A small trade developed in the villages along the Severn, from where they were shipped to industrial South Wales,

A cut in tax and growth in sugar production in the colonies resulted in Britain in the 1850/60s having probably the cheapest sugar in the World. This encouraged the production of jam, the Blaisdon Red, and Yellow Egg plum found in woods and hedges in the Severn Vale met this demand.

On 10th February 1619 a dispute was heard in the Bishop’s Court between the vicar of Hartpury and Richard Nelme concerning the latter’s refusal to pay tithe on £4 worth of cherries. £4 in 1619 = £750 today, so evidently cherries were a significant crop at that time

Stones from Prunus avium (sweet cherry) and P. cerasus (sour cherry) were found in Nympsfield Long Barrow.

Heritage collection of plums, cherries and damsons are being planted in GOT’s Longney orchards to ensure these old varieties saved for future generations.

Heg Peg Dump was a popular dish in Gloucestershire, made with suet and plums/damsons and served on St. Margaret’s Day (20 July).

Publications about Gloucestershire Plums

Charles Martell’s book Native Plums of Gloucestershire is due to be published by GOT soon. It will complement our other books (also by Charles) on Gloucestershires Apples and Pears. Details of these are available on the bookshop page of our main website.

Sample list of a few local plum varieties:
Barley Plum, Blaisdon Red, Bristol, Damson Plum, Dymock Red, Frampton Magnum, Gloucestershire Violet, Groves Late Victoria, Jacob, Johnnie Moor, Jimmy Moore, Michaelmas Damson, Old Pruin, Rodley Blackjack, Rowles Pruin, Shit Smock, Smith’s Pruin, Sweet Damson, Velvets, Victor Christian, Winterbourne Magnum, Yellow Egg,

Archived information from our old website:

These links will open archived information from our old website. Please note that this information is not optimised for tablets or phones and will display only in a basic format. Please also note that this infomation is not up-to-date and is provided here for reference only.




Editing notes: Decisions are needed on how to structure these pages - how to present the local varieties in an accessible way, without being overwhelming. And, also to avoid duplication - the NPPC centre website for example has a thorough treatement of pears - should we be repeating that here, or merely linking to it?